Naga teen center links launched
By Jason B. Neola NAGA CITY --- This year’s nationwide celebration of the Population and Development Week which was held last November 23-28 was concluded here with the launching of Executive Order 2017-024 that seeks to constitute strong partnership between the Naga City Teen Center and the direct line agencies of the city government. With the Naga City Population and Nutrition Office (NCPNO) in the center stage, the 5-day celebration went through with the conduct of Marie Stopes ligation, Zumba para sa Planadong Pamilya, Slogan and on-the-spot poster making contests. Aside from the launching of EO 2017-024, the program was also highlighted with the holding of a seminar on “Kalalakihang Tapat sa Responsibilidad at Obligasyon sa Pamilya (Katropa) which was organized along with the Barangay Service Point Officers and the Barangay Council of San Felipe. The launching, which was held with the signing of a memorandum of agreement, is expected to strengthen the collaborative effort of the Teen Center and the different instrumentalities of the city government to expedite and make the delivery of quality health care efficiently and effectively. The Naga City Teen Center was established by Executive Order 2016-046 which was issued by Mayor John G. Bongat on November 3, 2016. The facility, according to the city mayor, is a strategy promoted by the Commission on Population to help in the prevention of risky sexual and non-sexual behaviors among young people. Bongat, who supports the establishment of the facility in the city’s 27 barangays, said that Teen Centers are supposed to provide opportunity for young people to talk about various issues and concerns affecting them, receiving counselling and develop life skills necessary in managing their lives responsibly. As teen-friendly facility, the teen center, which occupies a space inside the NCPO, can be a hangout venue where they can play games, listen to music, watch movies or simply talk with each other aside from its capacity to become vital instruments for the literacy and formation of youth in Naga City, the mayor said. It is being manned by youth volunteers from various barangays and schools in the city. A peer counselors training by the CPNO in coordination with the Commission on Population prepare the youth volunteers for their roles and responsibilities in running the center. The center has the following functions: 1.) to provide direct interventions toward the prevention of risky sexual and non-sexual behavior among young people; 2.) to provide opportunities for dialogue and interaction among young people; 3.) to provide counselling and life skills development opportunities for the young people; 4.) to provide a venue where young people can hang out and play games, listen to music, watch movies, or simply talk with each other. The signatories in the partnership agreement are the NCPNO, Naga City Teen Center, City Health Office, Naga City Hospital, Our Lady of Lourdes Infirmary, Metro Public Employment Service Office, Alternative Learning System (ALS), City Social Welfare and Development Office, and the Technical Education Skills Development Authority. The roles of the local government instrumentalities as signatories are to provide medical, dental, nursing services; promote environmental sanitation and enforce health and sanitation standards; primary hospital services, including medical, pharmaceutical, laboratory, nursing and auxiliary services, rehabilitation of malnourished children through supplemental feeding and nutritional care, and malnourished pregnant mothers, family planning services among married couples and other target groups, promote social development through livelihood creation, care protection and rehabilitation of persons with disability, provision of assistance to disaster victims in times of calamities, capability-building of women, children and youth, serve as livelihood arm of the city government, provide job placement services, promote cooperative and manpower development, provide trainings and competencies, provide an avenue for out-of-school youth to continue their field of study through ALS method and perform other functions as may be necessary.